Advice from a recruiter: How to negotiate a counter offer

Advice from a recruiter: How to negotiate a counter offer


The last 12-months have been a rollercoaster ride for the talent market and it remains to be fiercely competitive. We’re seeing vast increases in employers counter offering their staff as they resign for new roles – in fact 52% of those we surveyed said they have been counter offered when resigning.

That’s why we wanted to gather some clear information about whether accepting a counter offer or continuing with an offer for a new position external to your organisation is best for your career.

With over 500 responses from our network, we feel we have a clear view of how beneficial counter offers are to professionals in the market who feel like it’s time to take the next step on the job ladder.



Whilst a huge number of people are receiving these offers from their employers, our stats show that over 62% still make  the decision to reject this offer and take the new position outside of their current organisation. This is reflective of the experience we have of recruiters as most people who are looking at new employers have a multitude of reasons why and they understand that their issues cannot be solved and career progress cannot be made whilst staying in the same place.

In fact, only 20% of those who did take the counter offer by their current employer said it solved all of the issues which made them look to leave, further reinforcing that often it’s not the best course of action.



Remuneration is central to deciding to move positions, however over 41% of those we spoke to said they had not asked for a pay rise or promotion before deciding to interview for other positions. If the issue of pay or progression is your sole reason to leave a job, you should have the conversation with your current employer before deciding to apply for other positions.

Conversely, almost 33% of people said they had asked for a pay rise or promotion and been rejected. This too calls into question the authenticity of the counter offer, if the offer is only available as you’re exiting the business, it’s worth asking how valued you are by the employer.

However, whilst monetary offers are key, only 13.6% of people said it was their only motivation. In fact, the other influencing factors included in offers which were a key part of the decision were; a title change, structured career development or more responsibilities and reduced working weeks or increased flexibility. In fact, over 18% listed this flexibility as their primary reason for taking an offer over the 13.6% concerned only with salary.


What should you do with all of this information? Well, use it to interrogate what it really is you want from the next steps in your career and approach your hiring manager with those requests before embarking on a time consuming job search.

It’s also key to remember on being counter offered with an elevated salary that it’s only one part of the job package being offered. This salary raise will likely not remedy any other concerns you have about your position or the organisation and may not include other benefits like flexibility or structured professional development which are often more valuable in the long term.

If you’re looking for tailored career advice and the next step in your employment, get in touch with us today at [email protected]